Castlevania 64 was released in 1998 and marked the first attempt to bring Castlevania kicking and screaming into the world of 3D. It's a 3D platform game [with occasional attempts at being Resident Evil] which once again charts the Belmont family's adventures in trying to make Dracula stay the fuck dead.
It got a mixture of praise and criticism at the time and has a 78 on Metacritic, but it hasn't aged well at all; a rather wilful camera, the male lead being hopelessly underpowered and some incredibly frustrating levels mean people often say it's the worst 3D Castlevania: indeed, Screw Attack once rated it as the worst transition of a 2D game to a 3D game.
In this one we have two protagonists, the aforementioned underpowered faux-Belmont Reinhardt Schneider, and a young mage named Carrie Fernandez who really wrecks shit up. Their quests overlap, with quite a few levels shared, but the sub-plot is altered for each character and they both have unique levels. In this version, Reinhardt's Duel Tower has no save points.
Early videos were recorded for the LP torture chamber thread, which is why it's mentioned several times. Viddler mirrors will be up at some point.
|Part 1 - The Forest of Silence||Dailymotion||Viddler|
|Part 2 - Also The Forest of Silence||Dailymotion|
|Part 3 - Castle Wall||Dailymotion||Viddler|
|Part 4 - Villa||Dailymotion||Viddler|
|Part 5 - Villa continued||Dailymotion|
|Part 6 - Underground Waterway||Dailymotion||Viddler|
|Part 7 - Castle Centre||Dailymotion||Viddler|
|Part 8 - More Castle Centre||Dailymotion|
|Part 9 - Even more Castle Centre||Dailymotion|
|Part 10 - Tower of Science||Dailymotion||Viddler|
|Part 11 - Tower of Sorcery||Dailymotion||Viddler|
|Part 12 - The Clock Tower||Dailymotion||Viddler|
|Part 13 - Castle Keep [bad ending]||Dailymotion|
|Part 14 - Castle Keep [good ending]||Dailymotion|
Castlevania: Legacy of Darkness was released in 1999, and represents a sort of special edition which restored a fair amount of content removed from the original. This included two additional playable characters, Cornell and Henry, a couple of extra bosses, a new system for increasing the power of sub-weapons, a new first stage, and reworked versions of several later stages. It also supports an unplayable Hi-Res version using the N64's memory expansion pak, which I'm not going to use. It also eliminated one of the camera views from the original version, which annoys...I think just me, since I appear to be the only person on the planet who ever used it.
Legacy attracted a fair amount of criticism on the basis it's what Konami should have released to begin with, as well as the aforementioned unplayability of the hi-res mode. Metacritic doesn't actually seem to list it at all.
|Part 1 - Foggy Lake||Dailymotion||Viddler|
|Incidentally, so you know I'm not making this up: Castlevania: Rondo of Blood intro||Part 1||Part 2|
|Part 2 - Forest of Silence v.2.01||Dailymotion||Viddler|
|Part 3 - The Castle Wall: now with 50% more The Castle Wall||Dailymotion||Viddler|
|Part 4 - The extended Villa, Part 1||Dailymotion||Viddler|
|Part 5 - The extended Villa, Part 2||Dailymotion|
|Part 6 - The Outer Wall||Dailymotion||Viddler|
|Part 7 - Art Tower||Dailymotion||Viddler|
|Part 8 - Tower of Ruins||Dailymotion||Viddler|
|Part 9 - Tower of Science, re-scienced||Dailymotion||Viddler|
|Part 10 - Duel Tower||Dailymotion||Viddler|
|Part 11 - Tower of Execution||Dailymotion||Viddler|
|Part 12 - Tower of not as much Sorcery||Dailymotion||Viddler|
|Part 13 - Clock Tower||Dailymotion||Viddler|
|Part 14 - Castle Keep||Dailymotion||Viddler|
BONUS! Map of Tower of Ruins' maze
|Part 1 - Forest of Silence, Castle Wall||Dailymotion||Viddler|
|Part 2 - Villa, Underground Tunnel||Dailymotion||Viddler|
|Part 3 - Underground Waterway, Outer Wall, endings||Dailymotion||Viddler|
Due to a conversation on IRC, we located a texture pack for LoD. While it's certainly unique, it's not really all that, well, good. Still, Staticfiend has vowed to go ahead with more videos of this, so we win more videos.
|Part 1 - Not Foggy At All Lake [Staticfiend and Evil Tim]||Grimfiend|
|Part 2 - Lava Forest of Silence: [Staticfiend, Garin and Evil Tim]||Grimfiend|
Diabolical additional linkery!
I, Sir Douglas Farnsworth Flossington-Blake-Tosspot the third of Peterborough, hereby catalog the numerous other saucy fellows who have jaunted through the many novel designs of Romanian castle.
Let's Play Castlevania by Psychedelic Eyeball in which a continental chap dons his top hat to fight the treacherous chicanery of the infamous rapscallion mister V. Tepes
Let's Play Castlevania III by taxidemistpasta in which we witness a disreputable ragamuffin able to climb walls by means unsavoury, and are again permitted the delightful fancy of a lady fighting alongside men-folk
Let's Play Super Castlevania IV by slowbeef & an lively cast of thousands [incl the right respectable King George, the Warsaw Philharmonic Orchestra, a surprisingly skilled urchin of much repute, and some kittens]
Let's Play Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow by Garin in which a bally Yank controls a pasty wastrel in his quest to discover some devious oriental plot-devices
Let's Play Castlevania: Rondo of Blood by Static_Fiend in which a young wench and a street-brawler of some renown join forces to deal with that shady ruffian Dracula once again
As you can probably tell from these descriptions, this game was rewritten just a few times during development.
The not villains!
Heir to the Belmont name after losing it during the game's development, Reinhardt took up his family's sacred duty of killing the shit out of Dracula after hearing of his return. He wields the Belmont family's vampire-killing whip, named Vampire Killer so he doesn't forget what it's for. He also has a short sword for killing torches, which trigger the Belmont candle-destroying reflex ingrained into his very being.
Reinhardt doesn't care about being retconned by Koji Igarashi. He's glad his whip doesn't have the fucking stupid backstory from Lament of Innocence, so there.
BONUS! Reinhardt concept art 1
Reinhardt concept art 2
When she's not being outwitted by her own furniture, Carrie is a mighty sorcerer from a clan of mages with a past that might once have tied into the series' actual continuity but now doesn't. Carrie's ability is to generate a homing bolt composed of pure asskickery and set it against her foes, and she's armed with two odd little ring-things for anything that needs a good whacking, such as torches and Malus.
Her family was killed by Dracula, and she vowed to get her revenge by slaying him. To this end, she dressed in her most ridiculous clothes and set out for his castle, ready to face any vampire or plot contrivance she might encounter along the way.
Bonus! Carrie concept art 1
Carrie concept art 2
Cornell a.k.a. Blue Crescent Moon
Cornell is a man-beast [that's a werewolf, to you and me] who must free his young sister ADAAA!! from the dastardly clutches of Dracula. Years of training have armed Cornell with cat-like reflexes and an incredible mullet. His main attack is a blue...thing. There's no real way to describe it.
Cornell is unique in the two N64 games in that for him the L trigger actually does something. To be exact, it transforms him into
No, it never goes into why he's got a spare name lying around.
BONUS! Cornell concept art
Cornell learns he's been turned down for the role of Nero in DMC4
ADAAAA!! is Cornell's young sister. Only she's not his sister, because she's adopted. However, he sees her as his real sister, because he's rather thick. She's been kidnapped in order to be sacrificed to Dracula, and he must rescue her. One of these days Dracula will hit on a plan that doesn't involve kidnapping girls who are blood relatives of mighty vampire hunters and we'll be proper fucked.
Cornell first meets Henry in a frankly embarrassing mini-game in the garden maze, in which he must be escorted to the same door Malus leaves through in 64.
We've seen him as a tombstone in the Villa's front garden in 64, but apparently he didn't get the memo and his family forgot their name, so he turns up as a playable character in Legacy of Darkness instead of Coller. Henry wears a suit of armour and packs himself a magnum for dealing with those pesky undead. Having committed the heinous crime of bringing a halfway practical weapon to a Castlevania game, Henry is relegated to an overblown mini-game in which he must rescue six children in order to unlock secret stuff.
Coller is not happy about this. And Henry with his helmet off bears no resemblance to anyone.
Surly ol' vampire-hunting tosser who carries around a vast cross to frighten Jesus. Chuck Vincent is part of an asinine time-of-day puzzle in the original and gives our heroes some much-needed sass. Charlie is also vital to the ending of the original game due to being the only member of the heroic cast with an IQ that doesn't begin with a decimal point.
He also loves to reload during a battle.
Dracula [note: contents may vary from Dracula]
One of the few characters in the game with more than one line actually spoken, this is the traditional Christopher Lee Dracula complete with cloak and overacting. He appears in both games, but for some reason Legacy of Darkness removes all his voiceovers from Carrie and Reinhardt's quests, possibly to make room for Cornell's over-written cloud of words of an introduction.
He waits for us in the traditional final tower with the even more traditional structurally unsound staircase leading up to it.
BONUS! Dracula concept art
Creepy little kid who might as well be wearing a T-shirt with 'I AM DRACULA' printed on both sides. He appears several times in the original to deliver impossibly heavy-handed foreshadowing. His name is Latin for 'evil' just in case it wasn't obvious enough who he is.
Retconned both N64 games because he didn't like them, then refused to put a Clock Tower in Lament of Innocence because it would be anachronistic.
Yes, you read that correctly.
This rather chunky Death is mainly Reinhardt's nemesis, but turns up in Legacy too. He's got a pair of wings and a big scythe, and has an attack so aggressively silly I don't want to spoil it for you.
When not re-enacting the intro to Rondo of Blood for no reason at all, Castlevania 64 Death enjoys sharpening his scythes, polishing them and EATING BUCKETS OF FUCKING LARD.
BONUS! Check it out, it's got wings!
The result of Dracula biting Mary Poppins, Actrise takes over from Death in Carrie's scenario. A witch who apparently sacrificed one hundred children to gain immortality, she's probably supposed to have a really annoying and piercing laugh, but that's not subtitled as 'ho ho ho' and I'm not playing along with Konami's warping of the language to their own devious ends. She has some interest in acquiring Carrie's power, and reminds you to check you feet.
Gilles de Rais
Red-suited butler guy with a role in Legacy of no real importance at all. Gilles de Rais is one of those real-life historical figures that appear in Castlevania from time to time. He was a knight who fought alongside Joan of Arc, and then was promptly executed for the minor character flaw of being a pedophile rapist serial killer.
It's pronounced 'Zheel' de Rais, before you ask.
Rosa is met briefly by both heroes in the original game, but forms the core of Reinhardt's sub-plot as he attempts to save her from the half-assed vampiric curse which has caused her to turn into a vampire but not evil. In his good ending, a combination of extremely silly events causes her to stop being a vampire.
It's a good thing Leon Belmont didn't know that.
One of the script's more ridiculous [and, now that I know it, obvious] re-writes, the Fernandez Warrior [who may or may not be called Camilla, but probably isn't] was originally to have been Sypha from Castlevania 3, which would have explained Carrie's powers as her descendant / cousin / whatever. However, that was removed. For a while, she was going to be Carmilla [no, I don't know why either] until it was eventually settled on having her just be Carrie's random cousin who is never mentioned before the boss battle.
It's no wonder poor Carrie can't remember her name.
Bonus! Fernandez Warrior when she was Carmilla, I can't *think* why this didn't make the final game
Ortega is Cornell's childhood friend and rival, which he appears to have confused with 'arch nemesis' somewhere along the line. He's a big, chunky werewolf dude with a lot of tattoos and hilariously spikey hair.
BONUS! Ortega is not a Goron and he's offended that you think he is.
This giant Frankenstein's monster with a chainsaw for a hand was the downfall of many players in the original's garden maze, doing insane amounts of damage with his chainsaw hand and aided by two stone dogs who would grab you for slashity. He's toned down in Legacy, with his stone dogs gone walkabouts.
The Gardener was originally designed as the fourth playable character [the original, original list was Coller, Cornell, Simon Belmont and Maria]. He would have been armed with a chainsaw and shotgun, making him easily the greatest Castlevania character ever. As seen below, Coller would have looked like a cross between Ash, Clint Eastwood and Kryten. Wardrobe by Tetsuya Nomura, arm by McCulloch.
BONUS! Coller concept art 1
Coller concept art 2
The other guys!
Renon is a demon salesman. As in he's a demon who is a salesman, he's not a mortal who sells demons. Stop being stupid.
In both games, he runs the store, selling items for gold, though because of the absurd amount of status and healing items in the game already it's seldom necessary to use him. Spending over 30,000 gold will cause you to fight him in his demon form, due to his rather impractical contract demanding your soul if you give him too much money. You'd think it would be if you gave him too little, really.
Underworld boatman. Appears at the start of Legacy of Darkness for no easily defined reason. Available for parties, reasonable rates, call for details.
Isn't in these games.
Even more BONUS!
Art: Malus and Renon
Art: Charlie Vincent and Death
Stage concepts 1
Stage concepts 2
Enemy concepts 1
Enemy concepts 2
Character renders 1
Character renders 2